June 25, 2019
8.30 - 9.30 pm

Cortile Guido Fanti, Piazza Maggiore, 6, open to the public



The 21st century seems to be characterized by an explosion of the urban form. This explosion can be analyzed both in the extensive and in the intensive dimension adopting the conceptual angle provided by the border. On the one hand the development of the urban form blurs the traditional boundary between the country and the city. On the other hand a multiplicity of heterogeneous boundary crisscross the urban space, articulating and at the same time challenging its unity. The critical dialogue will provide elements of diagnosis of this global predicament, particularly focusing on the material forces driving these developments and on the ensuing conflicts and struggles. The notion of “right to the city” will be critically tested in this framework.

Sandro Mezzadra works as an Associate Professor of Political Theory at the University of Bologna and is adjunct research fellow at the Institute for Culture and Society of Western Sydney University. He has been visiting professor and research fellow in several places, including the New School for Social Research (New York), Humboldt Universität (Berlin), Fondation Maison des sciences de l’homme (Paris), and UNSAM (Buenos Aires). He has published widely on the areas of migration, postcolonial theory, contemporary capitalism, Italian operaismo, and autonomist Marxism. He is the author of In the Marxian Workshops. Producing Subjects (2018, Rowman & Littelefield) and – with Brett Neilson – of Border as Method, or, the Multiplication of Labor  (2013, Duke University Press) and The Politics of Operations. Excavating Contemporary Capitalism (2019, Duke University Press). He is currently the coordinator of the H2020 European project PLUS (“Platform Labour in Urban Spaces: Fairness, Welfare, Development”).

Saskia Sassen is the Robert S. Lynd Professor of Sociology at Columbia University and a Member of its Committee on Global Thought, which she chaired till 2015. She is a student of cities, immigration, and states in the world economy, with inequality, gendering and digitization three key variables running though her work. Born in the Netherlands, she grew up in Argentina and Italy, studied in France, was raised in five languages, and began her professional life in the United States. She is the author of eight books and the editor or co-editor of three books. Together, her authored books are translated in over twenty languages. She has received many awards and honors, among them multiple doctor honoris causa, the 2013 Principe de Asturias Prize in the Social Sciences, election to the Royal Academy of the Sciences of the Netherlands, and made a Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et Lettres by the French government.